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Limmen National Park Plan of Management
Limmen was declared a national park on 17 July 2012 and a Plan of Management is now being drafted to guide management of the Park over the next ten to fifteen years. Public involvement in how Limmen National Park should be managed is important and you are invited to provide your thoughts and ideas. Take a look at the Have Your Say brochure which details the Parks values as well as some ideas for future management of the Park.
Featuring a vast and rugged landscape, this 960,846 hectare national park lies in the heart of northern Australia’s tropical savannah country.
The Park includes striking sandstone ‘lost city’ formations, permanent tidal rivers and wetlands, a considerable collection of Indigenous and European historic sites and an abundance of wildlife including nesting Flatback Turtles on the shores of Maria Island.
The Park is very isolated. While there are significant opportunities for recreation and conservation, access can be difficult. This allows properly equipped visitors to enjoy a sense of remote adventure.
Limmen National Park is located in the Gulf of Carpentaria in Australia's Northern Territory and is approximately 305 km southeast of Katherine and 76 km northwest of Borroloola. The Park can be accessed from Katherine by leaving the Stuart Highway about 10 km south of Mataranka and following the Roper Highway east to the Pt Roper Road, (turn-off 3 km before Roper Bar). From Borroloola follow the Carpentaria Highway for 32 km before heading north along the gravel road for another 44 km.
Although the gravel Nathan River Road is generally of reasonable quality, it may be impassable for long periods between December and May. Check with the Parks and Wildlife office in Katherine (08 8973 8888) or the Nathan River Ranger Station (08 8975 9940) before travelling.
The Gulf region sits between the wet tropics and the arid zone. South-easterly breezes keep temperatures comfortable between April and August, however from September to January temperatures can reach the 40’s. Most of the 800 mm average rain falls between December and April, causing flooding and road closures throughout the region.
With a small yet steadily increasing number of visitors each year, Limmen National Park is enjoyed by recreational angles, remote campers, and those with an interest in wildlife watching, photography and short walks around the intriguing sandstone pillars of the Southern and Western Lost City’s.
There are five camping areas within the Park: Munbililla, Towns River, Butterfly Falls, Limmen Bight River and Southern Lost City Campgrounds. Camping facilities include picnic tables, barbecues and toilets.
The Limmen Bight Fishing Camp and Lorella Springs Wilderness Park, located adjacent to the Park, provide camping and basic facilities on private properties.
Boat ramps are located at Towns River Campground and Munbililla Campground as well as at Limmen Bight Fishing Camp.
Fuel, accommodation, food, post and EFTPOS facilities are available at Borroloola 182 km to the south of the Nathan River Ranger Station.
Fuel, food and accommodation are available at Roper Bar store, 192 km to the north of the Nathan River Ranger Station.
Limmen National Park boasts an abundant and diverse array of cultural and historical sites. From Indigenous culture to Macassan trepangers, foreign seafarers, European explorers and pastoral pioneers, the culture and history of the Park is of national significance.
There are a diversity of language groups affiliated with the area, including Mara, Alawa, Wandarang, Ngalakan, Garawa, Yanyuwa, Kurdanji and Binbinga. The Park is extremely rich in Indigenous culture and numerous art and other significant cultural sites are located within the Park.
European occupation commenced with the exploration by Ludwig Leichhardt in 1845 and later in the 1880's with the taking up of the pastoral lease, 'Valley of the Springs' by John Costello.
The Gulf Track stock route which traversed the area was used for droving herds of cattle from the eastern states of Australia to the Top End and the Kimberley's. Through this stock route the Gulf Region played an important role in the 'opening up' of Northern Australia.
The Territory Government declared Limmen National Park on 17 July 2012. This followed public consultation on the proposed Limmen National Park and Limmen Bight Marine Park, with over 60 submissions received.
The area has important natural, recreational and tourism, commercial and historical values, and the Government has recognised this with the declaration of each Park. National Parks that connect oceans to the land are special and world class.
The public will continue to be consulted throughout the management planning process for the Park.